I KNEW I should have cancelled my GP appointment

Note to self: next time just cancel it. Don’t question whether or not it’s sensible, or mood-related, just cancel it.

So I saw my GP this afternoon, and came out almost in tears (pretty rare for me, ‘soldier on‘ and all that). Why? Well, I’m pleased to say it wasn’t because my GP was angry, or told me off. My GP never does that; he might screw up his face or sigh when I’m reporting something bad, but there’s never anger.

Initially I didn’t think I could tell him anything – I just sat there and looked at the floor guiltily. To be honest that told him most of what he needed to know, but eventually I admitted to cutting. And I admitted to my pill-related activities, and how much I hated myself for promising him that I wouldn’t abuse last week’s prescription meds.

The first thing my GP talked about was meds, saying that slowly titrating off sertraline (Zoloft) and slowly building up the trazodone (Desyrel) doesn’t seem to be the right approach. Instead we made a plan for the next two days: come off the sertraline completely, and move up to 200mg of trazodone. Except he didn’t give me enough of the latter for me to do that, but by Thursday I’ll be taking 150mg which is three times what I’m on now.

With the meds sorted, he moved onto ‘keeping me safe’:

Should I be ringing the hospital, asking them if you can be admitted to stabilize…?

‘NO, THAT IS NOT HAPPENING. NO WAY.’

…okay, remember I’m asking, not telling…’

Is there a friend or someone who could stay with you for the next few days? No. Generally people don’t know, and I refuse to inconvenience the ones that do. They have their own problems. Okay…well look, given you’re not managing to work, and that this pain you’re in is only going to get worse as your deadlines and exams come closer over the next two months, perhaps you should drop out and save yourself the agony? No. I can’t. My parents don’t know about any of this. Okay…so you tell me, what could we do to make you safe? Nothing. I can’t think of anything that I couldn’t undo.

And then as I privately muse over how I should tell him there isn’t a solution and leave, he makes things worse. He tells me he’s going to make me an appointment to see the nurse tomorrow so she can check the damage I’ve done to my arms. I said that really wasn’t necessary, that I’d stitched them up myself with strips, but he wasn’t convinced (not that he looked, and I had them covered up anyway), and said he’d also like me to see the nurse so she can check I’m okay tomorrow. Oh fantastic. And he wants me to check in with him again on Friday.

AND THEN my GP very firmly told me that there is absolutely no point continuing with my studies right now, and that I should consider dropping out of university altogether. Bring my parents in to meet him and explain everything. Find a job, move on from academia, and get better. But I’ve heard this before; when I argued against taking time out this time last year, I was told I needed to give studying a break and would get better as a result. And we know how well that has worked.

My ‘homework’ is to think about a dream job, so we can work backwards in planning how to achieve it. The appointments are made (I’m now seeing the nurse on Thursday). I left. And tried not to cry.

I wish I didn’t have a brain; it hurts. First off, I feel awful about this appointment, because my GP was trying SO HARD to help me, and I didn’t help him in the slightest. That wasn’t deliberate and I wasn’t trying to be difficult; I had my own firm reasons behind every ‘no’ I gave. But I’m also stubborn, and very reluctant to believe that other people might know what’s best for me. My GP cares A LOT, and I try to shut him out. So yeah, I feel very guilty at how frustrating and difficult I made things.

Second…this dropping out thing…it can’t happen. It isn’t an option. I sometimes feel kind of pathetic when I admit that the thought of my parents suddenly finding out that a) I’m seriously mentally unwell right now and b) I’m dropping out for a second time scares the hell out of me despite me being in my twenties, but actually it’s fair. I’m financially dependent on them, so me suspending again means loaning me more money (a job would maybe cover rent, but this city is expensive and I’d also need to pay tuition fees etc). There’s also the problem that they don’t really understand depression etc, and would be firmly in the ‘laziness’ camp. And of course there’s the fact that I’ve effectively lied about my health improving continuously for the last few months (their current impression is that I have mild depression).

I can’t think anymore. I don’t even want to go to therapy tomorrow because this is such a contrast to how I was feeling last week. I don’t want to describe what’s happened since then.

I want to curl up and disappear.

P.S – want to know a secret? My GP doesn’t even know the worst of it. On Saturday I realized that although my highly impulsive, reckless state of mind was strange, I’d actually experienced it once before…about a month ago, minutes before I tried to kill myself.

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The temptation game

I’m awful when it comes to temptation. As soon as I think of something I want, or something I want to do, the temptation tends to stick like an obsession until I give in. Today’s temptation was buying another box of Nytol.

I ran out a couple of days ago after overdosing in increasing amounts on consecutive nights, and originally decided not to do anything about that since I was supposed to be starting trazodone (Desyrel) yesterday/today, which has sedative properties. Well today I established my GP has apparently forgotten about that, and I won’t be starting it for another week. Another week stuck with 200mg sertraline (Zoloft), and another week of the joys of insomnia. 

And then ‘you could buy another box of Nytol‘ slipped into my head. I had discussed this with a friend yesterday; I firmly told him I wouldn’t buy more because I know I lack self control and would inevitably continue overdosing if I had it to hand. That resolution wasn’t as strong as I thought, because the truth is that when you keep having nights with little and broken sleep, you become desperate. My psychiatrist reviewed my sleep hygiene a long time ago and I was already doing the things I was supposed to, I’ve tried herbal sleep aids, I’ve tried various sleep routines, audiobooks etc. None of it works, so you run back to the one thing that does. Even though you know it’s bad. Wrong. Irresponsible. Sometimes dangerous.

I’m not proud of it, but it isn’t like I haven’t tried to find help. Recently I’ve very clearly stated to my GP, therapist and psychiatrist that I have a serious problem with abusing Nytol. Enter: trazodone (thank you psychiatrist), except as I said the GP has slowed that down. And he won’t trust me with even the smallest quantity of zopiclone (understandable, but unfair, as explained in earlier posts).

What else am I supposed to do?!

 

Flash and burn

I don’t know quite what’s going on with me at the moment; I seem to have these flashes of impulsively wanting to hurt myself, and then long stretches where I burn with anger and a general sense of dissatisfaction. Every night I take a larger overdose of Nytol. If I continue with that, tonight will host 4x the recommended dose. I fantasize about being beheaded, or burned with the end of a cigarette, or smashed round the head with a hardback book. 

When I last saw my therapist (Wednesday), I agreed to move back to once-weekly sessions (as opposed to twice weekly), but Dr T said I should email him if I ended up needing to see him sooner. Given the above, I decided I should get in touch. Unfortunately he replied saying he can’t see me before Wednesday next week, and advised me to write my thoughts/feelings down. I found that kind of patronizing, and deleted the email instantly. 

On Friday I was up at the psychiatric hospital for the next medication review, and didn’t come away with anything conclusive. The doctor I saw said she wanted to talk to her consultant, and my GP, before either adding something to the sertraline I’m currently on, putting me back on fluoxetine (Prozac) as that’s a medication I found useful before, or introducing a new med altogether. I’m hoping they reach a decision some time next week.

The only good thing that’s happened is that the trapped gallstone episode seems to be over, and I’m not in pain anymore. Hurray. Despite the urgent referral for an ultrasound my GP made on Wednesday I’m disappointed to say I haven’t been given a date/time, but then again I suppose this isn’t life threatening, and there will be people in the queue with suspected cancer. 

I don’t want to be awake. I don’t want to do anything, except inflict pain on myself. 

So yeah, flash and burn

 

And then the sun comes up

The last fortnight has been crazy. Or perhaps it would be more accurate to say I’ve been crazy. I’m still finding it hard to believe some of what happened, especially the suicide attempt. Dealing with the consequences of that overdose has been very challenging, both physically and mentally. And it’s by no means over yet.

But, I feel better. It’s amazing to write that, so maybe I’ll do it again: I feel better! I’m not exactly jumping for joy, and even the word ‘happy’ would be a bit of a stretch, but I’ve definitely moved from the very bottom of the mood scale to somewhere around the middle. It’s no longer true that every minute hurts. I can think more than two days ahead. I’m even contemplating doing some work. 

I’m going to cross all my fingers and hope that this isn’t a blip, or a mood swing. I’d be a bit more confident if it wasn’t for the fact that I don’t know why my mood has changed. Could it be the passing of time? The sertraline? I don’t know. It certainly helps that my parents didn’t freak out when I told them how much therapy is going to cost them this month (over £300), which had been worrying me. But I was on the up before that conversation.

Who knows? I’ll just have to see how I feel tomorrow.

Check in: Sertraline to the max

For the last few weeks I’ve been on a daily dose of 150mg sertraline (Zoloft), and it hasn’t done anything for me at all. I have a hospital appointment next Friday, and I would put serious money on the psychiatrist telling me to up it to 200mg, so when I saw my GP this afternoon we decided to boost it now. Admittedly a week at a higher dose isn’t much time to test if it’s working, but I’d rather we did that than wait for the psychiatrist to tell me to increase the dose, and then be stuck with sertraline for another 6 to 8 weeks for re-assessment.

I highly doubt an extra 50mg is going to cross a magic threshold into usefulness. If the previous doses had had any effect whatsoever, I might hold some optimism. But 1.33 x nothing = still nothing.

I don’t want to take sertraline anymore. In fact, I don’t want to take any of these meds anymore. I can’t tell you why for sure, but I suspect this gut feeling comes from the long, long list of meds that I’ve tried and had to discard/wean myself off. Last time I saw the psychiatrist, they told me that if sertraline doesn’t work we will effectively give up. Well, give up already.

 

Ready to run

As the title suggests, I’m ready to run. I don’t know where; anywhere but here. But I do know I won’t be coming back, in more ways than one.

I’ve been feeling very on-edge over the last few days. My brain is buzzing, and I can’t settle down to do anything because I feel like something huge is about to happen. Like my life is about to completely change. A break down. Uni work seems pointless, and I can’t even start reading a book right now. This restless, anxious state scares me. And I don’t feel safe in any sense of the word. Something keeps telling me to down all my pills, or self harm, or something along those lines.

I admitted this to my GP on Friday, and now I’m not even trusted with weekly prescriptions. I have to pick them up twice a week, and then ask the pharmacy to give me 3 or 4 pills at a time. It’s really tedious. AND I’m not allowed any more zopiclone; apparently that option is ‘busted’. I understand why my GP won’t give me the sleeping pills, but at the same time I overdosed on antidepressants, and didn’t break my promise to him about not taking all 28 zopiclone at once. If I want to overdose on sleeping stuff I can just buy more Nytol. I already have a whole box in my room. So I haven’t been sleeping very well recently, and I’m sure that’s really helpful at this moment in time.

I’m seeing my therapist twice weekly, and the sessions are becoming increasingly painful. Dr T is really getting to the core of me, exposing all sorts of memories and defenses I’d rather forget. He believes my on edge feeling isn’t a fear that something’s going to happen, but instead that I’m finally experiencing an emotional response to something that’s already happened. I don’t know what that would be, but Dr T is pretty sure. He’s probing deeper and deeper into my childhood, telling me I’ve blocked things that are starting to come to the surface now. I can’t take it.

At the end of the month I’ll get my next invoice from Dr T, and I’m terrified to give it to my parents. Seeing Dr T twice weekly = an impressive bill. My parents have been threatening to stop paying for a while because they think therapy is just a comfort thing, and I can’t afford it on my own. I feel like I’m on a different planet to my family. There have also been some uncomfortable ‘friend’-related issues this weekend. Plural.

Part of my brain is screaming ‘ENOUGH‘. Run. And running doesn’t just mean leaving town, it means suicide, because running would leave a mess I can’t undo.

I don’t want to take these pills anymore (sertraline), although I can’t say for sure why I object to them so much. And I don’t want to exist in this much mental pain.

Grab a bag, leave my phone, and go to the coast. Book into a hotel. Go for some walks, find some peace. And then end.

I need courage

It was suicide

I checked my internet history from Friday night.

I remember it until 9:05pm

At 9:17pm I began googling many variations of ‘sertraline 1.2g overdose’, ‘1g sertraline suicide’. I even read an e-book that mentioned it.

At 12:50am I start googling ‘1g zopiclone’.

I did try and kill myself on Friday.

I don’t even know what to say.